Residents vote to dissolve Mastic Beach village
Mastic Beach residents on Wednesday voted to dissolve their village six years after it was incorporated.
The dissolution passed with 1,922 votes in favor and 1,215 against. The village now has 180 days to come up with a dissolution plan.
As News 12 has reported, Moody's Investors Service rates the village as "non-investment grade" due to its financial woes. Some voters said they wanted to dissolve the village altogether and return to the Town of Brookhaven's jurisdiction. Others said the village should stay in place but under new leadership.
The village hired an Albany consulting firm that said if the village is dissolved and the Town of Brookhaven picks up services, taxes would go up 22 percent.
Had residents voted to keep Mastic Beach an incorporated village, consultants said taxes could have gone up 200 percent, possibly up to 400 percent to cover road paving and capital improvements.
"Some people might be able to afford it," said Mastic Beach Mayor Maura Spery. "That is what it's going to come down to. Who can afford to have the village government? Because in the end, tax-neutral is a myth, it's never existed."
Spery was an outspoken critic of the decision six years ago to create the village, and she did support the village vote to dissolve.